Lady Jackets win to end skid

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Heath Joplin

BUFORD – The Buford girls got on track in Region IV-AA basketball play, while the Jackets fell shy in their bid to land their first region win Friday, Jan. 18 in the BHS gym.

The Lady Jackets ignited in the third period to post a 41-30 win over the Lady Rams.

In the nightcap, the Jackets used a furious late rally to force overtime only to fall short in the extra period.

The Buford girls, 9-6, 1-3, held a 16-10 halftime spread and then exploded on a pivotal 20-6 third-period spurt to take a 36-16 lead.

“I liked our intensity level and was glad to see shots fall which we had been missing,” Buford coach T.J. Armbrust said. “It’s been a tough stretch, but I knew our girls would bounce back.”

BHS senior Carley Bailey, who had 15 points, six rebounds and four steals, hit six points in the Lady Jackets’ third period spree as did Erica Blackmon.

Blackmon netted nine points to go with three rebounds and three steals.

“The girls played well for three quarters, but we still need to play well for an entire game,” Armbrust said. “Hopefully, this win will get us turned around in region play.”

Chesterfield, 2-2, 4-8, rallied in the final period, but BHS had done too much prior damage.

Bailey’s 15 led Buford, which snapped a four-game skid. Blackmon and Gabby Davis each netted nine. 

Davis added eight rebounds and six blocked shots.

Valerie Jones, Megan Deese, Mikayla Hannah and Adrianna Ray each had two points.

Chesterfield was led by Cierra Hardwick’s 10 points and Yasmine Joines added eight points.

The boys game saw the Jackets rebound from a sluggish start and use a torrid fourth-quarter rally to force overtime in a tough loss.

In the extra session after regulation ended on Mikeem McKinney’s buzzer beater trey from the top of the key, the game was scoreless until the final minute.

Chesterfield took control with back-to-back buckets off missed free throws to build a 51-47 edge.

The Rams, 6-10, 1-3, built a 53-48 lead and took the two-point win just after Orantez Coleman’s trey at the final buzzer made it close.

Buford, which shot 24 percent for three periods, tailed 13-2 after one quarter and was down 25-13 at the break.

The Rams owned a 36-23 advantage with a period to play, but Buford, behind some accurate three-point shooting on six made treys, used a 24-11 surge in the closing quarter to tie the game and force the OT.

Garrett Crenshaw, who hit 14 points, netted 12 in the second half, with eight in the final period.

Kholby Pate had six of his team-high 18 points in the final eight minutes and McKinney’s trey at the buzzer sent the Jackets in the OT with the game stalemated at 47-all.

“Little things again hurt us tonight,” BHS coach Neil Couch said. “You just can’t wait to the fourth quarter to start playing.”

The loss dropped BHS to 6-6, 0-4, with three of the Jackets’ four region losses by four points or less.

McKinney netted seven for BHS and Nate Saxon scored five. Corey Bracey added two points.

Norez Byrd led the Rams with 17 and Kevin Burroughs added 12.

In jayvee action, Buford split a twin bill on Thursday, with Junior Lady Jackets taking a 31-12 win to move their mark to 2-3.

BHS, which was led by Jensen Shelby’s 13 points, led 17-2 at the half and cruised to the win. Ty Hough hit eight. Betty Ingram and Autumn Rabon netted four points each. Cassidy Sullivan added two points.

The Buford Junior Jackets dipped to 5-6 with a 44-37 loss to the Junior Rams.

Brandon Joplin led Buford with nine points. D.J. Stradford scored eight and Wade Lambert netted six. Christian Joplin tallied five and Dru Rollings added four. Tyler Stroud and Blake Langley each had two points. Christian Catledge added one.

 Buford is back in action Tuesday when the Jackets host Indian Land in region play at 6 p.m.